KEARNEY — A woman was allegedly five times over the legal alcohol limit to drive Saturday when she was stopped by police.
According to reports, the woman was driving with an unrestrained child who was sitting on a case of beer with, what court records referred to as, a loaded assault rifle nearby.
Katherine Schroder, 27, of rural Elm Creek was arrested late Saturday night after allegedly colliding with a vehicle in the 400 block of Second Avenue, then fleeing the scene. She is charged in Buffalo County Court with felony child abuse, and driving under the influence of alcohol, leaving the scene of an accident, unauthorized operation of propelled vehicle, no operator’s license on person, child restraint violation and an improper turn, all misdemeanors.
Around 10:32 p.m. Saturday Kearney Police Department officers were called to the 400 block of Second Avenue for a hit-and-run accident. The suspect vehicle, a 2014 blue Chevrolet Silverado pickup with a Nebraska specialty license plate, FRMARMR, fled the scene and was being followed by witnesses.
The pickup, owned by a rural Elm Creek man who was a friend of Schroder, was located in the 2200 block of Central Avenue and Schroder was identified as the driver.
When police approached the pickup, court records indicate, a strong odor of alcohol was coming from Schroder, who reportedly had bloodshot, watery eyes, struggled to roll down the window and placed the pickup in reverse instead of park.
Police found a 2-year-old boy unrestrained in the back seat of the pickup sitting on top of a case of beer near a loaded assault rifle, according to records. An unloaded .22 rifle and unloaded shotgun also were in the pickup.
Records say the boy’s mother had seen Schroder leave the area with the boy in the pickup without permission, and had made attempts to contact Schroder, but was unsuccessful.
A preliminary breath test indicated Schroder’s blood alcohol content was .431, records say. A legal blood draw also was taken, although results are unknown. The legal limit for BAC is .08.
KPD Capt. Mike Kirkwood said it’s unclear why the child was left unattended inside the vehicle. The child’s parents were both cited for misdemeanor child abuse, and the child was released back to them.
Schroder was arrested and taken to the Buffalo County Jail. The incident remains under investigation.
Schroder posted a $1,000 bond Monday afternoon and was released from jail. She is scheduled to appear in court later this month.